Daily Briefs

Judge dismisses felony in officer’s beating of naked woman

DETROIT (AP) — A judge has dismissed a felony charge against a Detroit police corporal in the beating of a naked, combative woman who prosecutors say was having a mental breakdown inside an emergency room triage unit.

The Detroit News reports that Judge Cylenthia Miller dismissed the misconduct in office charge Tuesday against 47-year-old Dewayne Jones. He still faces a misdemeanor assault and battery charge.

A video posted in August on WJBK-TV’s website shows the 29-year-old unarmed woman being punched about a dozen times at Detroit Receiving Hospital.

The judge says the woman was “completely out of control” and Jones “had the presence of mind” to get control of her.

Defense attorney Pamella Szydlak says Jones “tried to de-escalate the situation” while the woman spat and tried to bite him. She said Jones “had no choice” but to use force.


Michigan lawmakers seek new designation for water pollutants

DETROIT (AP) — Three members of Congress from Michigan want to make federal funds more readily available to clean up public water supplies contaminated with a group of toxic chemicals.

The lawmakers have introduced a bill that would classify the substances known as PFAS as hazardous substances under the federal Superfund law.

The designation would require the Environmental Protection Agency to report releases of the chemicals into the environment and clean up tainted sites. It also allows the government to sue polluters to recoup cleanup costs.

EPA tests have found pollution from PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, in public water supplies for 16 million Americans in 33 states, including Michigan.

Democratic Reps. Debbie Dingell and Dan Kildee and Republican Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan are sponsoring the legislation.


Michigan AG puts supervisor over Flint water probe

DETROIT (AP) — Michigan’s new attorney general has appointed a Detroit-area prosecutor to supervise criminal cases arising from the Flint water crisis.

Fadwa Hammoud was named Tuesday by Attorney General Dana Nessel. She also will serve as the attorney general’s chief appellate lawyer.

The decision means special prosecutor Todd Flood will report to Hammoud. Nessel says the Flint water cases “have gone on for years” at a cost of millions of dollars. She says it’s time for “resolution and justice.”

Fifteen people have been charged in the investigation of lead-tainted water and an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease. Seven people have pleaded no contest to misdemeanors in exchange for their cooperation.

Hammoud is joining the attorney general’s office from the Wayne County prosecutor’s office. Flood says it will be a “pleasure” working for her.